The Prophet of Fire by John MacDuff


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The life of Elijah is, in the truest sense of the word, a poem–an inspired epic. It is surrounded throughout with a blended halo of heroism and saintliness. Though neither angel nor demi-god, but “a man of like passions,” intensely human in all the varied incidents and episodes of his picturesque history–he yet seems as if he held converse more with heaven than earth. His name, which literally means “My God the Lord,” or “Jehovah is my God,” introduces us to one who had delegated to him superhuman powers; not only an ambassador from above, but the very viceroy and representative of Omnipotence. He announces himself as standing before the Lord of hosts, as if he were an servnt in the heavenly palace, rather than a citizen of the lower world; coming forth from time to time from his mysterious seclusion to deliver his message, and then retiring again into solitude to wait fresh communications from on high. No one in Scripture story possesses a more thorough individuality; and this is all the more remarkable, as we have only a few broad touches descriptive of his personal appearance, and of his mental and moral character. But these are so bold and impressive, that there is no mistaking him. He stands out in immense clarity from the sacred canvas. Others of illustrious name, who occupy a far larger share of the inspired page, appear shadowy and undefined in comparison with this illustrious product of nature and grace.


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